We’ve heard from coach Ron Rivera and wide receiver Steve Smith about the Panthers’ decision to promote Mike Shula to offensive coordinator this week and now quarterback Cam Newton has added his two cents on the hire.
Newton doesn’t differ too much from what we’ve already heard. He’s on board with the Shula hire, saying he couldn’t think of a better choice and citing the same points about continuity that Rivera and Smith touched on when they shared their thoughts. Newton said that he’s spoken with Shula several times since the promotion and shared his feeling that continuity can’t just mean doing exactly the same things that former offensive coordinator Rob Chudzinski did before he left to become the head coach in Cleveland.
“I believe it will be similar, but you always have to evolve,” Newton said, via Pat Yasinskas of ESPN.com. “You can’t stay the same. If you do, you’re going to get schemed up. I’m looking forward to (Shula’s) twist on the offense. I’m as curious as everyone else to see what we’re going to be as far as an identity.”
Newton’s right about the need for the offense to evolve to ensure success in the future, but that’s hardly at odds with the continuity that the Panthers have been pushing at every turn. It’s finding ways to make the offense more successful rather than tearing it down and starting from scratch. Whether sticking with what’s gone on the last two years is really the best choice for a team that’s won 13 games in that span is worthy of discussion, but it’s the route the Panthers have decided to go and everyone seems to be on board right now.